Introducing the Rapid SLT – Four Views are Better Than One

Volk’s Rapid SLT lens cuts down Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty (SLT) procedure time by almost 50% and minimizes the need for lens rotation. The Rapid SLT is the newest addition to the laser lens family from Volk Optical. Specially designed for Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty (SLT), this innovative lens incorporates four total internal reflective surfaces instead of just one – which has been the industry standard – until now. The large reflective surfaces provide four amazing and simultaneous views of the trabecular meshwork and iridocorneal angle.

SLT has emerged as a widely accepted treatment choice for addressing increased Intraocular Pressure (IOP) in patients with glaucoma. Using a Q-switched, frequency doubled, 532 nm Nd:YAG laser, SLT is considered to be less disruptive than Argon Laser Trabeculoplasty (ALT). This technique ‘selectively’ targets pigmented cells that have a greater ability to absorb the laser than the surrounding structures, thereby being considered a relatively safer procedure.

Until now, special laser lenses with a contact element and a single reflective element to facilitate viewing the trabecular meshwork were used as the standard in this procedure. However, these types of lenses require rotation on the patient’s eye to view and target the entire trabecular meshwork. This procedure is often cumbersome for doctors as they must balance rotating the lens while simultaneously stabilizing the lens firmly on the cornea. For patients, this method increases discomfort due to the time the lens remains on the eye, as well as the rotation, which induces blink reflex in many patients.

Efficient Procedure, Lesser Strain

With four spectacular views available through the Rapid SLT (Figure 2), doctors can carry out the SLT procedure with just a minimal one-time adjustment of the lens, resulting in reduced procedure time by almost 50%. The number of laser spots targeted on the eye is also reduced owing to a clear, high resolution, 360° view of the angle.

“This lens is very comfortable for both doctor and patient and provides excellent resolution imaging. After the first round of laser, I only need to rotate it just about one and a half clock hours to complete the SLT procedure,” says Douglas Ripkin, MD; glaucoma and anterior segment specialist at the Cole Eye Institute, Cleveland Clinic.

This enhances patient comfort owing to a quicker procedure and reduced lens rotation. The 1.0x image magnification provides an optimally intuitive view of the angle, while the 1.0x laser magnification helps keep the laser spot profile accurate. “I also use this lens for quick dynamic gonioscopy to examine the angle because of its contact design,” adds Ripkin.

Nathan Lighthizer, O.D., F.A.A.O, the Assistant Dean of Clinical Care Service and Director of Continuing Education at the Oklahoma College of Optometry highlights the functional convenience provided by the four views of the Rapid SLT. “The Rapid SLT lens has been a tremendous addition to our clinic and specifically for SLT procedures in our patients with glaucoma. The new lens has allowed us to reduce our SLT times significantly. The four mirrors of the Rapid SLT lens drastically diminish the need to rotate the lens while performing the SLT procedure, making the procedure more efficient, while at the same time also helping to reduce glare and bubble formation during the procedure which can limit views of the anterior chamber angle anatomy. From the very experienced doctors who have done thousands of procedures, to the students and resident doctors who are early in their experience with SLT, all have commented on the great views achieved with the Rapid SLT lens and the efficiency that it brings to the procedure. It has now become our lens of choice for SLT procedures,” states Lighthizer.

An Easy Transition For O.D.s

According to John McCall Jr., O.D., who collaborated on the design of the rapid SLT, not only does the Rapid SLT speed up the procedure time but also results in more efficient laser spot placement. “What I found, as well as my partners have, is that we use about 25% fewer laser shots with the Rapid SLT. That is 25% lesser millijoules fired into the eye than we used to before, making the procedure safer,” says McCall.

He also highlights the importance of the smaller contact design element of the lens, “With this flange, it is easy on the patient while providing adequate suction through the whole procedure. It is also easier to get off of the eye.”

This feature is particularly beneficial when treating patients with small palpebral fissures or flaccid eyelids who are more prone to blinking the lens off the eye.

Overall, starting with the application of lens on the patient’s eye, through administering the laser, to removing the lens off the eye, the Rapid SLT enhances ease of use at each step of the treatment.

The prevalence of glaucoma continues to increase, bringing an increased need for timely intervention. The Rapid SLT enables an easy transition from diagnosis to treatment for O.D.s, thanks to the nearly 360° view of the angle, analogous to the four mirror gonioscopy technique mastered by every O.D. The Rapid SLT’s views enable better-informed diagnosis and treatment. For O.D.s traveling to licensed states for treatment days, the reduced procedure time translates directly to an ability to treat more patients with each visit.

Conclusion

As evidenced by the images provided by Vadym Pecherii, Ophthalmologist and laser surgeon at the Zinitsa Ophthalmic Center, Ukraine (Figures 2 & 3), the Rapid SLT is a prime example of Volk’s dedication to high resolution imaging. He describes the lens as providing a comprehensive look into the angle from an overall four-view examination, to being able to notice minuscule details with the slit lamp setting at 40x magnification. Volk’s promise of unmatched imaging quality combined with enhanced ease of use, increased patient comfort, and reduced procedure time makes the Rapid SLT a lens every glaucoma specialist will look forward to adding to their collection!

John A. McCall, Jr., OD
Crockett Eye Clinic
A past President of the American Optometric Association, McCall specializes in general optometry and laser treatments for glaucoma management.






Nathan R. Lighthizer, OD, F.A.A.O
Oklahoma College of Optometry
Lighthizer serves as the Assistant Dean of Clinical Care Services and the Chief of Specialty Care Clinic among other roles.






Douglas Ripkin, MD
Cole Eye Institute, Cleveland Clinic
Ripkin specializes in the care of advanced glaucoma including
bypass and MIGS shunt devices, glaucoma laser surgery and cataract surgery.







Volk Optical Strengthens Investment in India with GM Appointment

Sunil Bharti joins Volk as General Manager for India

Mentor, Ohio (February 14, 2019) – Volk Optical (www.volk.com) has appointed Sunil Bharti to the role of General Manger, India. The move comes as the Indian market is expanding, with vision health becoming a key focus to meet the needs of its population.

In his new role, Bharti will lead Volk’s current sales and marketing organization in India and will be responsible for establishing and implementing the strategy for continued growth in the region. Bharti will work closely with doctors and healthcare institutions to understand the Indian market’s unmet needs and provide the best solutions from Volk’s portfolio of diagnostic and therapeutic lenses, surgical instruments, and ophthalmic imaging devices. Bharti will continue to develop Volk’s Indian distributor network, provide training for new and existing customers, and increase the company’s presence and services in India.

“Sunil’s appointment is an important step as Volk supports the growth of vision care in India,” explains Volk President, Dr. Jyoti Gupta. “According to the India Vision Institute, India has one of the largest populations of individuals with preventable blindness in the world. This is due primarily to a shortage of vision care specialists and difficulty in accessing care in rural areas. Where such a disparity exists, products that speed exam and treatment time, and technologies that enable telemedicine are critical. Sunil and his team will play a key role in supporting doctors and healthcare workers with access to the best technology, solutions, and training.”

Bharti brings over 20 years of medical device and life sciences experience in the Indian market to Volk. He was most recently Deputy General Manager of Sales for Perkin Elmer Genomics-India, a role that encompassed sales strategy and sales team leadership for the company’s diagnostic products line. Prior to that he progressed through increasingly senior roles at Johnson & Johnson India after it acquired Synthes Medical, where Bharti was Head of Sales at the time of acquisition. Bharti earned his Bachelor of Pharmacy degree from Mumbai University and completed his studies with an MBA from Narsee Monjee Institute of Management.

Volk will be exhibiting at the All India Ophthalmological Society (AIOS) annual meeting February 14-17 in Indore, Madhya Pradesh, India. Show visitors will have the opportunity to meet Bharti in person at Volk’s exhibit Stall, number B22 and B27. Visitors may also try out all available Volk lenses before purchasing.

Volk Optical is an industry leader in aspheric ophthalmic lenses for the diagnosis and treatment of the human eye, and portable diagnostic imaging devices. Glass lens fabrication and the company’s patented double aspheric technology result in the highest resolution imaging with the best stereopsis for precision diagnostic, therapeutic, and surgical procedures. Volk’s portable, electronic, digital imaging devices are building the foundation for the future of ophthalmology, optometry, and general medicine. The company is based in Mentor, Ohio, USA and has representatives and distributors around the world.

Halma Gift of Sight Campaign to end Preventable Blindness Starts in the U.S. with Volk

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Statistics show that preventable blindness is set to affect more than 115 million individuals by 2050, with 80% of global blindness being reversible or preventable through early diagnosis. As world leaders in eye health technology, our parent company, Halma plc, understands the critical need to raise awareness for the importance of maintaining good eye health through regular screening.

On October 11, 2018, designated as World Sight Day, Halma officially launched its Gift of Sight campaign focusing attention on the global issue of blindness and visual impairment. The campaign is a partnership with the Himalayan Cataract Project (HCP), an international organization focused on eradicating preventable and curable blindness in underserved communities.

We were thrilled to host the first US pilot program for this initiative. On December 17, 2018, 71 Volk employees, and some family members, received free eye screenings at our facilities in Mentor, OH. Through these 20-minute exams, using Volk’s Pictor Plus and sister company Keeler’s Tonocare, trained Volk employees captured Visual Acuity, Fundus Images, and Intra-ocular pressure (IOP) for both eyes. Screenings also looked at Diabetic Retinopathy, and assessed the likelihood of Glaucoma.

Participating in this campaign brings our employees together for a common purpose while creating life-changing impact for our daily work. We are proud to be part of Halma who, through this campaign, showcases their dedication to us as employees ensuring we receive proper care, and serves our communities around the world. As Arjit Bansal, product manager, Volk, said: “On a humanitarian level it satisfies me – and it’s given me a great opportunity to test some of our products and see the real-life impact of what we are doing. I can see people getting screened and understanding more about their eye health, and I feel like the purpose that we started with has come to life. I am proud to be part of an organization that really cares about people.”

 

In conjunction with the employee eye screenings and awareness campaign, Halma plans to raise up to $200,000 for HCP. Gift of Sight will continue its screening events in 2019 across Halma locations worldwide.

A selection of pictures can be found here. To learn more and see a film on Gift of Sight’s work in Ghana, click here and for information about HCP, visit www.cureblindness.org.

 

Volk Optical Expands Leadership Team with New Vice President Appointment

Utkarsh Sharma, Ph.D. joins Volk as Vice President of Product Development and Strategic Marketing

Mentor, Ohio (March 22, 2018) – Volk Optical has appointed Utkarsh Sharma, Ph.D. Vice President of Product Development and Strategic Marketing.

In this new role, Dr. Sharma will lead product development for Volk’s entire range of ophthalmic products. This includes accelerating development of advanced diagnostic, surgical and imaging products that fulfil unmet needs in the vision space, as well as sustaining and improving existing products. The company’s products include a full line of reusable and single-use diagnostic and surgical lenses and portable diagnostic ophthalmic imaging systems. Dr. Sharma will contribute to the company’s strategic plan as a member of Volk’s executive leadership team and board of directors.

Dr. Sharma brings to Volk extensive experience in product development, management and commercialization of ophthalmic imaging systems. Most recently, he served as Director of Optovue’s Advanced Development Team, leading the design and commercial launch of numerous ophthalmic diagnostic products. Prior to Optovue, Dr. Sharma was a Project Team Leader and Scientist at Carl Zeiss Meditec, where he led the development of the first FDA approved OCT Angiography (OCTA) technology.

In addition to his industry experience, Dr. Sharma spent time in academia as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at both Harvard Medical School (Boston, Mass.) and the University of Illinois (Urbana, Ill.). He earned a B.S. in Engineering Physics from the Indian Institute of Technology (Bombay, India), and an M.S. and Ph.D. in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Johns Hopkins University (Baltimore, Md.). Dr. Sharma holds 15 patents in medical imaging, applications, optics and lasers. He was recently awarded the prestigious SPIE Early Career Achievement Award for his pioneering contributions to ophthalmic imaging devices.

Volk Optical is an industry leader in aspheric ophthalmic lenses for the diagnosis and treatment of the human eye, and portable diagnostic imaging devices. Glass lens fabrication and the company’s patented double aspheric technology result in the highest resolution imaging with the best stereopsis for precision diagnostic, therapeutic, and surgical procedures. Volk’s portable, electronic, digital imaging devices are building the foundation for the future of ophthalmology, optometry, and general medicine. The company is based in Mentor, Ohio, USA and has representatives and distributors around the world.

Volk Optical Releases Next Generation Lens Cases

Redesign emphasizes form and function

Mentor, Ohio (November 28, 2017) – Volk Optical has launched a new case design for its full line of diagnostic and therapeutic ophthalmic lenses. The next generation case enhances the durability and look of its classic case design.

New Cases and Packaging

Volk’s next generation emphasizes both form and functionality. The sleek modern design has been engineered to withstand 50,000 openings, without hinge breakage. A durable thermoplastic rubber insert cushions the lens, and a magnetic closure holds the case securely shut.

Volk’s Digital Series, BIO, Slit Lamp, Laser, Gonio, Surgical, and Specialty Treatment Lenses are all available with the new case. For quick identification, the case exteriors are color coordinated by lens family and clearly labeled with the lens name. The cover plate can also be custom engraved with doctor or practice name.

The case’s new molded plastic exterior and interior insert are easy to wipe clean. The addition of nonslip stabilizing feet hold the case steady in place.

The next generation case is now standard on new single lens orders, or can be purchased individually.